Exactly What Is In The Coronavirus Stimulus Bill?

ZeroHedge posted an article today with the breakdown of the coronavirus relief bill passed by Congress.

The article includes the following chart:

You can decide for yourself how much of this is related to the coronavirus.

The article reports:

Within hours, Congress is set to vote on (and pass) a $900 billion Covid-19 aid bill that includes assistance for households and businesses, as well as funding for vaccine distribution and more. As discussed previously, the bill excludes the Republican priority of liability protections for businesses and other entities, and left the key Democrat demand of state and local bailouts.

In a nutshell, the new package extends federal UI programs (e.g. PUA, PEUC) with an extra $300/week for all UI claimants for at least an additional 11 weeks.

The article concludes:

One final point: no more stimulus?

As we reported last week, Goldman’s economists believe that this is the last major COVID-focused fiscal package. Assuming that President-elect Biden is facing a divided Congress next year, this looks likely to be the last fiscal package that Congress passes worth several hundred billion dollars or more (as by 2021 covid vaccines will be widely distributed making the passage of another broad-based stimulus virtually impossible). That said, Goldman does expect another debate over fiscal support in Q1, ahead of the expiration of the extended unemployment provisions in March. However, since Congress left the most difficult issues out of the current package, it seems unlikely that lawmakers will be able to agree on those in subsequent legislation. Of course, this would likely change if Democrats win both Senate seats in Georgia on January 5 and reach 50 seats in the Senate. In that scenario, Goldman would expect at least another few hundred billion in additional fiscal measures, including aid to states.

Please follow the link above to read the entire article. I explains much of what is in this bill.

Modern Monetary Theory Ends In Ghana

Zero Hedge posted an article today with the headline, “Ghana Becomes First Country To Officially End MMT Experiment.” MMT is the abbreviation for Modern Monetary Theory. It’s basic tenet is that printing an endless supply of money and having a central bank fund the  deficit. Basically as long as the spending is kept within your own country, your citizens will not notice how worthless their money has become.

The article reports:

There are just two problems: MMT is neither modern, nor monetary, nor is it a theory, although economists – especially socialists – are delighted to define it as such as it validates their worldview that somehow society can get richer if only people print more money, as if nobody has thought of that before (spoiler alert: they have, and the consequences have been devastating every time).

We won’t waste readers’ time on the intellectually bankrupt garbage that is socialist philosophy (because it is nothing more than that) that is the “Magic Money Tree” (See “MMT: Not Modern, Not Monetary, Not A Theory“) but we will note that some countries are smart enough to know that going down the money printing route leads to disaster. We will also point out that it is not a western nation – all of those advanced countries are desperately printing money in hopes of sparking currency devaluation and at least modest hyperinflation – but an African country that is now the epitome of sound monetary practices.

On Friday, Bank of Ghana Governor Ernest Addison effectively shut down MMT in his country when he ruled out providing more loans to the government to help narrow the budget shortfall, saying it would put exchange-rate stability at risk (for those confused: virtually every single developed and developing central bank is currently doing just that – printing money to fund the government deficit).

The central bank shelved its zero-financing policy this year to lend the government 10 billion cedis ($1.7 billion) to help mitigate the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the West African economy. The bank ended its explicit support of fiscal policy just as Ghana’s budget deficit is projected to reach 11.4% of GDP by the end of December, more than triple the initial target of 4.7% of GDP.

The article concludes:

And so one MMT experiment ends with a whimper, although since no other central bank is willing to to take “difficult decisions”, it will be a while before Ghana’s shining example is followed by other central banks.

Ghana’s cedi has had its most stable spell in more than a decade this year, weakening 2.6% to the U.S. dollar. That’s even as the global health crisis drove Ghana’s ratio of debt to gross domestic product to 71% in September, the highest in four years. And now that wanton money printing is out of the agenda, the cedi may soon well be one of the world’s most valuable fiat currencies.

Hang on to your hat. I don’t want to see the day when a loaf of bread costs ten dollars, but that is the danger on the road ahead.

American Ingenuity At Work

Zero Hedge posted an article today about a New York City pub owner who has had enough of Governor Cuomo’s shutdown orders that have closed his business.

The article reports:

In what is a hilarious bit of irony for Democrat politicians in New York, a pub that had its liquor license yanked due to Covid rules has now declared itself an “Autonomous Zone” and is continuing to do business.

The bar, called Mac’s Public House in Staten Island, said publicly: “We refuse to abide by any rules and regulations put forth by the Mayor of NYC and Governor of NY State.”

They also painted “AUTONOMOUS ZONE” on the sidewalk outside the bar and put signs in the windows claiming “As of November 20, 2020, we hereby declare this establishment an AUTONOMOUS ZONE”.

The pub had its liquor license revoked by the state and was slapped with thousands of dollars in fines after defying New York’s latest move to “orange zone status” (whatever that means) thanks to the very huge brain of “Emmy nominated” Governor Andrew Cuomo. 

Co-owner Danny Presti told The Post: “At this point, we’re OK with it, because we’re not paying it. [The Sheriff’s Department] is issuing us $1,000 fines, so they keep coming back. We’re still here. We’re not letting them in.”

Co-owner Keith McAlarney said in a recent YouTube video: “We’re not backing down. You think you scared me by . . . saying I don’t have a license now to serve liquor now? Well guess what? That liquor license is on the wall. If that liquor license is gonna come off the wall, it’s gonna be done by Cuomo. You wanna come down here and pull that license off the wall?”

To me, the interesting thing about the lockdowns is who they impact. Many small businesses have been forced out of business while big box stores and Amazon are making huge profits. Most of the people who frequent bars are not in an age group that is at high risk of complications from the coronavirus.

My husband and I have recently recovered from the coronavirus. We have no idea how or when we became infected–we wore our masks when required and we not generally in large groups of people. We continually interacted with the same ten or so people that we generally interact with. No one in that group of people has been infected by the virus. When we began feeling like we were coming down with a cold, we went into isolation because we didn’t what to share whatever we had. We didn’t find out it was coronavirus until five days into it. However, during those five days, we self-isolated. Closing down businesses is an overreaction. Years ago when I took a course on food safety, one of the things mentioned was that if a restaurant employee showed up at work with a cold, he could be assigned to chores that did not involve food preparation or interacting with customers. A little bit of common sense would solve a lot of the spread of this virus.

 

A Very Valid Question

Zero Hedge posted an article today that asks a very interesting question.

This is the question?

Why Does Biden Have So Many More Votes Than Democrat Senators In Swing States?

The article continues:

In most elections, the majority of votes are cast “down the ticket” – meaning, a voter supports both party’s presidential nominee and state Congressional candidates. In fact, according to Pew Research, “overwhelming shares of voters who are supporting Trump and Biden say they are also supporting the same-party candidate for Senate.”

Typically, this means that that the number of votes for a presidential candidate and that party’s Senate candidates are relatively close.

Twitter user “US Rebel” (@USRebellion1776), however, found that the number of votes cast for Joe Biden far exceeds those cast for that state’s Senate candidates in swing states, while those cast for Trump and GOP Senators remains far closer.

The article includes the following tweets from US Rebel:

Hmmm.

 

 

When Reality Meets Spin

Yesterday Zero Hedge posted an article about how the crisis at the southern United States border is impacting New Mexico. Actually it is impacting both the State of New Mexico and the politics of New Mexico.

The article reports:

The radical-leftist governor of New Mexico, who sent National Guard troops packing in February, needs federal help now, it seems. She’s in the Swamp to beg for funding as illegal immigrants overwhelm the state. After months of neglecting the border cities and towns, toeing the DC elite party line of no “crisis” here, and facing a veritable citizens’ revolt in the Land of Enchantment, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham is demanding federal government assistance for the dire situation – one she exacerbated through indifference to constituents.

And it comes on the heels of yet another county drawing a line in the sand and refusing any further influx of illegal immigrants seeking asylum. Sierra County, boasting a population 11,116 and a 21% poverty rate, joined Otero and Lincoln counties in passing resolutions opposing the relocation of migrants to their communities.

This isn’t just happening in these three counties, either – it’s an untenable and cruel situation being thrust on an impoverished state by government officials who seem to be mere puppets for the Democratic Party.

According to Deming City Administrator Aaron Sera, in Luna County, buses unload between 300 and 500 immigrants each day. As a town of a 14,183, it has been mercilessly overwhelmed by the governor’s dangerous game of partisan politics. Even larger enclaves, such as Las Cruces, have been overrun with illegal aliens, completely depleting community and local government resources as they’re  forced to house and care for 6,000 asylum seekers – and all in a matter of four short weeks.

The purpose of political asylum is to provide refuge for those people whose lives are in danger in their home countries–either for political, religious, or other reasons. Political asylum does not mean that you can simply enter another country illegally in hopes of either working there or living off of the largess of the people who live there.

America needs to redo its immigration policies. We need to help people in poor countries, but we also need to bring in people who will contribute to America, not take from it. There has to be a balance of those two things if America is to survive. This crisis is the result of Congressional inaction. How many bills have you seen come out of the current House of Representatives that included a common-sense approach to immigration? How many immigration bills in recent years have reflected common sense?

We need to seal the border and enact sane immigration laws. Let’s cut the cost of legal immigration and welcome those who want to help grow America.

The Obama Administration’s Economic Policies Are Not Working

Zero Hedge posted a story today on the latest jobs numbers.

The article included the following charts:

https://www.rightwinggranny.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/not-in-labor-force.jpg

The article reports:

In what was an “unambiguously” unpleasant April jobs payrolls report, with a March revision dragging that month’s job gain to the lowest level since June of 2012, the fact that the number of Americans not in the labor force rose once again, this time to 93,194K from 93,175K, with the result being a participation rate of 69.45 or just above the lowest percentage since 1977, will merely catalyze even more upside to the so called “market” which continues to reflect nothing but central bank liquidity, and thus – the accelerating deterioration of the broader economy.

Our economy is not doing well. It is time for a change of policy.